2011 - The Year We Take Back Congress and Make Obama's Life Hell!

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Bumper Schtickers,...

HT to JG at Now for Something Different,...

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4 Degrees of Separation

Four People who have no business being employed by the Phillies:

  1. "Inbred" Charlie Manuel - 8th inning, your 44-year old pitcher is getting tired, and NO BULLPEN HELP?
  2. 3rd base Coach Steve Smith - Slow Tap On Pedal???
  3. Wes Helms - We could deal with a bad arm at 3rd, if you hit a few HRs. What's the problem? Everyone else hits 'em at CBP!
  4. Rod Barajas - Just not productive enough. At least Chris Coste puts his heart in it!
Tell me again, Pat Gillick, how we can't get a decent relief pitcher with these guys?


Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Good Riddance to Bad Rubbish,...

NEW YORK — Rosie O'Donnell says she may never speak to Elisabeth Hasselbeck again after a heated argument on "The View" last week.

In a video entry posted on her blog, O'Donnell said Hasselbeck called after their now-infamous argument and spoke to O'Donnell's partner Kelli. But O'Donnell said she didn't speak to Hasselbeck and "probably won't." She said they exchanged e-mails.

Click here to view the video blog.

O'Donnell quit "The View" after she called Hasselbeck "cowardly" for not defending her when critics said she compared U.S. troops to terrorists. During the argument, the director used a split screen with O'Donnell on one side and Hasselbeck on the other. She said when she saw the split screen that's when she "knew it was over." She has said it made "The View" look like "The Jerry Springer Show."

ABC announced Friday O'Donnell would not be back on "The View," two days after she and Hasselbeck argued on air.

"We had hoped that Rosie would be with us until the end of her contract three weeks from now, but Rosie has informed us that she would like an early leave. Therefore, we part ways, thank her for her tremendous contribution to 'The View' and wish her well," Brian Frons, the president of Disney-ABC's Daytime Television Group, said in a statement.

Cindy Sheehan, the "peace mom" who made headlines in 2005 by staging a marathon protest outside President Bush's Crawford, Texas, ranch, said Monday that she no longer wants to be seen as a leader of the anti-war movement.

In a 1,245-word missive entitled "Goodbye Attention Whore" posted on the liberal DailyKos blog, Sheehan said her campaign to end the war in Iraq had strained her relationship with her children, cost her a marriage and left her nearly penniless.

"This is my resignation letter as the 'face' of the American anti-war movement," Sheehan wrote. "I am going to take whatever I have left and go home. I am going to go home and be a mother to my surviving children and try to regain some of what I have lost."

• Click here to read Cindy Sheehan's letter on the DailyKos blog.

Sheehan founded the Gold Star Families for Peace after her son, Casey Sheehan, a 24-year-old Army specialist, was killed in an April 2004 battle in Baghdad. Sheehan was an outspoken critic of the Bush administration's policies and was often a target of criticism herself for visiting with leftist leaders like Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez.


Monday, May 28, 2007

Why Its Called "Memorial Day"

Doug V. Gibbs has a profound post on his site, Political Pistachio, that warrants your attention.

I stood there gazing down at my grandfather's grave, recently. My mother and I stopped by his grave as she drove me home from the hospital that my son was at that day. He is just a young man of 22 years, and he is battling cancer. On Tuesday he will be back in the hospital, hopefully to commence the procedure that will finally remove this cancer from his body.

My grandfather served in the Army-Air Forces during World War II as an M.P. in France. I can still remember his stories from my childhood about the war. Granted, some of the stories were not necessarily the God's honest truth, like the one about him punching Hitler in the nose, but that was the kind of man he was. He joked around when inside he hurt a little. He passed away a few years ago. His body is at rest at the Riverside National Cemetery in California. His soul rests with God. His honor resides in my memories of him.
My dad served in Vietnam. He was a helicopter door gunner with the United States Marine Corps. He doesn't talk about his military days much, though sometimes you'll catch him say a thing or two about his service. Most of the time when he speaks of his time in Vietnam it's not about the fighting he was a part of, or the carnage he saw. If he speaks of his time in the service at all it is usually about his friends he had in Vietnam and at Camp Pendleton, and how they looked out for each other while he was there in Vietnam. He also talks, sometimes, about what it was like when he returned from overseas. There was no thank you. There was no parade. He took a taxi from the airport, sat down on his mom's couch, and switched on the television. On that black and white screen flashed images of the place he had just been hours before. It was surreal to him, knowing that he still had friends over there in Vietnam. His sister noticed he was home after a while, screamed to the family about his arrival, and at that point he received the only true welcome home celebration he would get. He has told me that he didn't regret fighting, but it still bothers him to this day that Americans had turned away from the soldiers, and he never really received a "Welcome Home, thanks for your service." Last year I met a couple writers at a Military Writers Society of America function. One was the widow of a Navy Corpsman from the Vietnam War, another a Vietnamese orphan that had been pulled from the region as we departed in 1975, and adopted by American parents. Both of them, after me telling them about my dad, gave me their books for free, and autographed them to my dad, thanking him for his service and welcoming him home. When I gave the books to him for his birthday a week later, and I opened them up so that he could read what had been written in them, he didn't cry, but I could see in his eyes that he wanted to.

Read the rest of the article for yourselves! That's an order!

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Friday, May 25, 2007

Bye-Bye Rosie,...Hello, Sanity!

NEW YORK — Rosie O'Donnell will not be back on "The View," ABC announced Friday, two days after she and co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck got into a huge political dust-up live on the talk show.

"We had hoped that Rosie would be with us until the end of her contract three weeks from now, but Rosie has informed us that she would like an early leave. Therefore, we part ways, thank her for her tremendous contribution to 'The View' and wish her well," Brian Frons, the president of Disney-ABC's Daytime Television Group, said in a statement.

After a colorful eight months on the show, punctuated by her feud with Donald Trump and frequent flare-ups with the more conservative Hasselbeck, O'Donnell's contract had been set to terminate on June 22.

"I brought Rosie to the show. Rosie contributed to one of our most exciting and successful years at 'The View.' I am most appreciative. Our close and affectionate relationship will not change," said show creator Barbara Walters.

"I'm extremely grateful. It's been an amazing year and I love all three women," O'Donnell said in a statement.

O'Donnell, who lifted ratings for the sagging talk show, said last month she would be leaving because she could not agree to a new contract with ABC executives.

Watching O'Donnell and Hasselbeck squabble on "The View" is nothing new, but Wednesday's brawl seemed particularly nasty with the co-hosts trading accusations and personal digs.

Video: Rosie vs. Elisabeth

A political discussion over the war in Iraq became heated when an angry O'Donnell decried Hasselbeck for not standing up for her when media outlets suggested that she'd called U.S. troops "terrorists" during a previous debate.

The argument with Hasselbeck began over O'Donnell's statement last week about the war: "655,000 Iraqi civilians have died. Who are the terrorists?"

Talk show critics accused O'Donnell of calling U.S. troops terrorists. She called Hasselbeck "cowardly" for not saying anything in response to the critics.

"What you did was not defend me. ... I asked you if you believed what the Republican pundits were saying — you said nothing, and that's cowardly," O'Donnell said.

"Do not call me a coward, because No. 1, I sit here every single day, open my heart and tell people what I believe," Hasselbeck retorted, and their riveting exchange continued despite failed attempts by their co-hosts to cut to a commercial.

O'Donnell and Hasselbeck were shown on a split screen as the argument progressed without commercial interruption.

"Do you believe that I think our troops are terrorists? And you would not even look me in the face, Elisabeth, and say, 'No, Rosie,'" O'Donnell said.

Responded Hasselbeck: "Because you are an adult, and I am certainly not going to be the person for you to explain your thoughts. They're your thoughts! Defend your own insinuations!"

O'Donnell said she wasn't going to fight anymore. "So for three weeks, you can say all the Republican crap you want."

Hasselbeck discussed the war of words in an interview with syndicated entertainment show "Extra."

"I honestly think, I believe that we are mature women who can resolve," she said. "I hope we can. I would hope that a disagreement or a heated debate wouldn't be the end of a relationship."

In a posting on her blog, O'Donnell wrote: "a split screen, new heights, or lows, depending on who u ask."

According to a New York Post report, O'Donnell's chief writer, Janette Barber, was allegedly led out of the building on Wednesday after she was caught drawing mustaches on photographs of Hasselbeck in "The View" studios.

On Thursday O'Donnell had asked for a day off to celebrate her partner's birthday. "The View" aired a taped show on Friday.

On her Web site, O'Donnell posted a scrapbooklike video on Friday with pictures and news clippings of her tenure at "The View." Cyndi Lauper's "Sisters of Babylon" played in the background.

A day earlier, she posted messages on her Web site indicating she might not be back.

"When painting there is a point u must step away from the canvas as the work is done," she wrote. "Any more would take away."

The TrekMedic muses:

I guess we won't have Rosie to kick around anymore. Which is pretty good, considering that it would probably break your foot, but,..whateva,....

Semi-related story here


Thursday, May 24, 2007

If Its Good for the Goose (an Imus Story)

HT to MaddMedic for this gem:

Bill Maher, host of the HBO political talk show "Real Time with Bill Maher," has caused a stir among some Christian circles after comments he made recently on his show.

In last Friday’s episode, which is also running throughout this week, the host made negative comments against the late Rev. Jerry Falwell, followed by an attack on Catholicism.

Some groups, such as the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, are putting pressure on Time Warner, the parent company of HBO, to now fire Maher, much like NBC did with the shock jock Don Imus over racist remarks.

"We are writing to the 14 members who sit on the board of directors of Time Warner,” expressed Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League, “asking each of them whether Maher's gratuitous and highly offensive attack on Jesus Christ merits the same punishment afforded Imus for his racist remark.”

In Maher’s recent commentary on religion, the talk show host first began by making negative references to Falwell and to his strong Christian activism within American politics over his lifetime.

“Death isn’t always sad,” he said, smirking. “This week the Rev. Jerry Falwell died and millions of Americans asked ‘Why?’ ‘Why God? Why didn’t You take Pat Robertson with him?’

“Now,” he added later, “I know that you’re not supposed to speak ill of the dead but I think we can make an exception because speaking ill of the dead was kind of Jerry Falwell’s hobby.”

After slamming Falwell for his past remarks on homosexuality and feminism and for “launder[ing]” his personal hate “through the cover’s of God’s will," Maher went on to criticize religion as a whole, notably the Catholic faith.

"And it's easy to start a religion! Watch as I do it for you,” said the political host during the program. “I had a vision last night! A vision! The Blessed Virgin Mary came to me - I don't know how she got past the guards - and she told me it's high time to take the high ground from the Seventh Day Adventists and give it to the 24-hour party people. And what happens in the confessional stays in the confessional.

He then went on to describe a scenario with two “gay priests” who were having relations in a car and making sexual innuendos to a police officer who walked upon the scene.

"Time Warner's Standards of Business Conduct, revised last month by the board of directors, includes the following principle: 'While our content may sometimes engender controversy, we want no one to question our character,'” added Donohue. “We know Maher lacks character. What the public needs to know is whether Time Warner's board has any."

Maher has been known to disagree with Christians, and has had much religious satire in the past. On the May 11 episode of the show, for instance, it featured a comic skit entitled the “Acu-Rath Weather Forecast,” where the host plays a Christian weatherman showing where God will judge the earth.

The show has also been known to have very liberal content, moving from two cable networks, ABC and Comedy Central, before finding its permanent home on HBO so that it could be free from censorship.

The show airs on Friday nights with two seasons of approximately twelve shows each.

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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

"Disinformation Without Challenge??"

So claims Carol Towarnicky in today's version of her perversely-named "The Common Good" column in the Daily News.

Her column starts off not to praise Jerry Falwell, but to bury him. I really didn't support Falwell and have no opinion, good or bad, about him. It rapidly spins out of control from there:

In the middle of Ronald Reagan's first term: Rush Limbaugh was just beginning his national radio career and his imitators on conservative talk radio had yet to turn on their microphones to broadcast disinformation without challenge.

Disinformation without challenge?? WTF do you call NPR? That's government-backed disinformation! What about the visual aspect of our broadcast media?? SeeBS? CeeNoNews?? MSMSNBC, in all its various forms??

This is then followed by an even more obscenely-humorous charge:

Yet last weekend, unannounced Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich exhorted the graduates of Falwell's Liberty University to continue the fight against "radical secularism," that is, apparently, a government that adheres to the First Amendment.

No, Carol, a government that adheres to the First Amendment would allow the use of the word God in the public venue. It would allow creches and menorahs to be displayed, side-by-side, in the appropriate season without a lawsuit from the "radically secular" ACLU!

For the uninformed, like most Dumb-o-crats, the First Amendment simultaneously provides for the free expression of religious beliefs, while prohibiting the government from being ruled by only one religious faith or belief system. It is only over the years that the "radically secular" liberals have perverted the First Amendment to quash any and all expression or utterance of the word God in public.

Next time, get your head out of your ass and get your facts straight!

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Tuesday, May 22, 2007

The White Flag We REALLY Wanted to See from Hanoi Harry!

WASHINGTON — Congressional leaders indicated Tuesday that a compromise is near over how to fund U.S. troops serving in Iraq and Afghanistan after Democrats confirmed they will abandon plans to include a troop withdrawal timetable in the war supplemental spending measure.

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer pledged that Democrats would try to include a timetable for withdrawal in next year's spending bills.

"We can't pass something without the president's signature and the president can't pass something without our agreement," Hoyer, D-Md., told reporters. "So we can be at a standoff and go back and forth at each other, or we can come to an agreement."

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid refused to call the compromise a defeat.

"I don't think there's any way you can stretch saying whatever we decided to do in this legislation is a defeat, for heaven's sake, look where we've come. We've come a long, long way," Reid, D-Nev., told reporters on Capitol Hill.

Reid vowed to continue pushing to change the direction of the war in Iraq through the upcoming defense appropriations bill, expecting to vote on the 2008 fiscal year funding measure Thursday night or Friday.

"We’re going to continue our battle — that’s what it is, to represent the American people like they want us to represent them, to change the course in Iraq," Reid said.

Sen. Trent Lott, R-Miss., said Republicans who oppose a timetable will likely get what they wanted.

"We're close to getting a result," Lott said. "We could achieve what we wanted all along and that's to get the funds for the troops without the timelines."

Congressional leaders and White House aides continue to hammer out a compromise after Bush vetoed a $124.2 billion bill on May 1 that would have funded the war through September but demanded that troops begin coming home this fall.


Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said Republicans aren't celebrating a victory yet, but expect to pass a bill that would fund the wars for four months without a withdrawal timetable.

“There’s no cheering yet," said McConnell, R-Ky., adding that he hopes to send Bush a bill by Memorial Day.

Sen Robert Menendez, D-N.J., an anti-war critic, said Democrats realize they've reached "a point in time of recognizing the intransigence of this White House on the war." But, he added, "I'm not buying in just because of the threats."

Sen. Russ Feingold, D-Wis., one of the most vocal opponents of the war said he would not go along with the plan and expressed disappointment with his party's leaders.

"I cannot support a bill that contains nothing more than toothless benchmarks and that allows the president to continue what may be the greatest foreign policy blunder in our nation's history. There has been a lot of tough talk from members of Congress about wanting to end this war, but it looks like the desire for political comfort won out over real action," Feingold said.

While a timetable to withdraw troops is out of the bill, a senior House Democratic leadership aide told FOX News that the other issue being worked out is what to do about domestic spending included in the legislation.


Aside from the minimum wage increase being in the bill, "nearly all other nondefense spending" is on the table, with some trimming on the dollar amounts, the House Democratic leadership aide said. White House officials admitted trying to pressure Congress to trim the non-military spending in the final hours — possibly by up to $4 billion of the $20 billion in there — but the war supplemental will have pork.

The House planned to vote Thursday on the bill.

Democratic leaders first will have to sway a large number of Democrats who want to end the war immediately — or pick up enough Republican votes to make up for the losses. Earlier this month, 171 House members voted to order the withdrawal of combat forces from Iraq within nine months.

Rep. Lynn Woolsey, D-Calif., co-founder of the liberal Out of Iraq Caucus, said she will vote against the new measure and predicted that many of colleagues will join her.

"I'm frustrated" with the war, said Rep. Joe Baca, D-Calif., a member of the Blue Dog coalition, a group of conservative Democrats. "But we realize too we have a responsibility to fund our troops and make sure they have the right equipment."

"Every time we negotiate, it (the bill) becomes weaker," said Woolsey, D-Calif. "This is a Republican bill, so it better be Republican votes that pass it."

Hoyer said the next step for his party will be to insist on tougher language in the 2008 military spending bill to be debated this summer.

The final Iraq bill also was expected to insist that U.S. troops meet certain standards before being sent into battle, out of concern from Democrats that some troops were going to Iraq without proper training. But the measure likely would give the president authority to waive this restriction.

FOX News' Trish Turner and The Associated Press contributed to this report.


Monday, May 21, 2007

A Trek Home Run!

Got it right down to the hairstyle!

Your results:
You are Jean-Luc Picard

Jean-Luc Picard
Mr. Sulu
Geordi LaForge
Leonard McCoy (Bones)
Will Riker
Deanna Troi
James T. Kirk (Captain)
An Expendable Character (Redshirt)
Beverly Crusher
Mr. Scott
A lover of Shakespeare and other
fine literature. You have a decisive mind
and a firm hand in dealing with others.

Click here to take the "Which Star Trek character are you?" quiz...

And a HT to Medic Mike,..who hasn't bothered to post for exactly ONE YEAR!


Sunday, May 20, 2007

Yes, Jimmy,...We Know You're an Idiot!

No need to remind us every week,....

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Former President Carter says President Bush's administration is "the worst in history" in international relations, taking aim at the White House's policy of pre-emptive war and its Middle East diplomacy. (TM- This coming from a man who let the Iranians run all over us and gave us 25 years of headaches??)

The criticism from Carter, which a biographer says is unprecedented for the 39th president, also took aim at Bush's environmental policies and the administration's "quite disturbing" faith-based initiative funding. (TM - Because we all know how love-thy-neighbor-ish Carter is,..especially to Jews!)

"I think as far as the adverse impact on the nation around the world, this administration has been the worst in history," Carter told the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette in a story that appeared in the newspaper's Saturday editions. "The overt reversal of America's basic values as expressed by previous administrations, including those of George H.W. Bush and Ronald Reagan and Richard Nixon and others, has been the most disturbing to me."

Carter spokeswoman Deanna Congileo confirmed his comments to The Associated Press on Saturday and declined to elaborate. He spoke while promoting his new audiobook series, "Sunday Mornings in Plains," a collection of weekly Bible lessons from his hometown of Plains, Ga.

"Apparently, Sunday mornings in Plains for former President Carter includes hurling reckless accusations at your fellow man," said Amber Wilkerson, Republican National Committee spokeswoman. She said it was hard to take Carter seriously because he also "challenged Ronald Reagan's strategy for the Cold War."

Carter came down hard on the Iraq war.

"We now have endorsed the concept of pre-emptive war where we go to war with another nation militarily, even though our own security is not directly threatened, if we want to change the regime there or if we fear that some time in the future our security might be endangered," he said. "But that's been a radical departure from all previous administration policies."

Carter, who won a Nobel Peace Prize in 2002, criticized Bush for having "zero peace talks" in Israel. Carter also said the administration "abandoned or directly refuted" every negotiated nuclear arms agreement, as well as environmental efforts by other presidents.

Carter also offered a harsh assessment for the White House's Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, which helped religious charities receive $2.15 billion in federal grants in fiscal year 2005 alone.

"The policy from the White House has been to allocate funds to religious institutions, even those that channel those funds exclusively to their own particular group of believers in a particular religion," Carter said. "As a traditional Baptist, I've always believed in separation of church and state and honored that premise when I was president, and so have all other presidents, I might say, except this one."

Douglas Brinkley, a Tulane University presidential historian and Carter biographer, described Carter's comments as unprecedented.

"This is the most forceful denunciation President Carter has ever made about an American president," Brinkley said. "When you call somebody the worst president, that's volatile. Those are fighting words."

Carter also lashed out Saturday at British prime minister Tony Blair. Asked how he would judge Blair's support of Bush, the former president said: "Abominable. Loyal. Blind. Apparently subservient." (TM - Yeah, Jimmy, go p**s off a few more of our allies!)

"And I think the almost undeviating support by Great Britain for the ill-advised policies of President Bush in Iraq have been a major tragedy for the world," Carter told British Broadcasting Corp. radio.

BTW - H/T to BobG at Sweet Spirits of Ammonia for the story and pic!


Saturday, May 19, 2007

Qagh'a'mey lubachHata' !

Or,...how do you say "Oops!" in Vulcan??

The payload container carrying experiments and the cremated ashes of some 200 dearly departed people — a cargo that includes remains of the beloved "Scotty" of "Star Trek" fame — has been recovered in the New Mexico mountains.

"It has been found. It is in good shape," Eric Knight, co-founder of the rocket firm, UP Aerospace, that launched the cargo, told SPACE.com Friday.

That payload section of UP Aerospace's second SpaceLoft XL rocket landed in rough mountainous terrain in the White Sands Missile Range after blasting off April 28th from New Mexico's Spaceport America.

The suborbital rocket shot the payload section up into space, with the booster stage and the top section individually parachuting back down to terra firma.

Tucked aboard the rocket were a series of experiments and the ashes of 200 people, including actor James Doohan — who portrayed the plucky Starship Enterprise engineer Scotty on television's "Star Trek" — as well as the remains of Gordon Cooper, one of NASA's seven original Mercury astronauts.

Time to Help Your Neighbors

By Walter F. Naedele
Inquirer Staff Writer

Richard Hedrick works at his home office in East Vincent Township in northern Chester County, a self-employed computer programmer. And several times a week, he rushes out to fight a fire or help out at some other emergency.

But unpaid volunteer firefighters like Hedrick have been disappearing as surely as the black-and-white dalmatians that sat on engines roaring to fires a century ago.

After the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, the decades-long decline of volunteer firefighters might have reversed in Chester County.

But only briefly.

Glenn Allison, 46, president of the Chester County Fire Chiefs Association, who owns a parking lot maintenance business in Downingtown, said in an interview that, "there was a steady increase shortly after 9/11, because everybody was in the spirit of the thing.

"And then it just steadily declined."

Justin Fleming, a spokesman for Pennsylvania Fire Commissioner Ed Mann, said that a 2005 state legislative report documented the decline.

"In 1976," Fleming said the report showed, "there were roughly 300,000 volunteer firefighters statewide. In 1985, that number dropped to about 152,000, and in 2005, about 72,000."

The Chester County decline "was pretty pronounced," said Allison, a volunteer firefighter. "It was obvious to see," but he added that he had no hard numbers showing how many volunteers there are in the county.

And Fleming said he knew of no year-by-year figures for volunteers on a statewide basis. Allison said he knew of no Chester County numbers.

At the all-volunteer Avondale Fire Company in southwest Chester County, Chief Michael P. Decker said that active membership of 40 to 50 in the 1980s, when his father, James, was chief, has declined by almost half.

But that has not affected the quality of firefighting.

"It's the same 15 to 20 guys per incident," Decker said, the same number as turned out for house fires in the 1980s.

The well-reported nationwide decline in volunteer organizations was highlighted by Robert D. Putnam in "Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community," published by Simon & Schuster in 2000.

Bowling Alone's Web site states that at least since 1975, "we sign fewer petitions, belong to fewer organizations that meet, know our neighbors less, meet with friends less frequently and even socialize without families less often. We're even bowling alone."

What has been hurting volunteer fire companies?

There's lack of time.

In his 31 years as a member of the volunteer West Bradford Fire Company outside Downingtown, Allison said the primary factor, as in much else today, is "the time constraints people have on their schedules."

Then there's location.

Many people don't work near their homes and therefore don't live near the firehouses in their hometowns.

Then there's ignorance.

"It's possible a lot of people don't understand what we do and how we do it. People move out here from the city, they're used to having paid fire departments and think it's the same as in the city." Some suburban departments have even hired a few paid firefighters to supplement their volunteers.

In East Vincent, Hedrick seems a bit harsher.

"It's becoming a problem because people don't want to commit. It's a lot of hours."

On the day when he was interviewed, he was distracted from the computer work that pays his grocery bill.

"I went out today three times on calls, because I work at home," Hedrick said. "People who can do that are becoming fewer and fewer."

His Ridge Fire Company covers all of South Coventry and East Coventry, he said, and pieces of three other townships.

In the three years that Hedrick, 56, has been a firefighter, membership has been "pretty static" at about 30.

He speculated that "you go back 30 years, you'll probably get 30 people out to a call. And now you're lucky if you get six or seven."

The quality of firefighting has not declined, he said. "Not yet. But it's one of our fears, as fewer and fewer people volunteer."

In Avondale, Chief Decker, 31, who works for a mushroom farm, is seeing no youth movement among his volunteer firefighters.

"We don't have a lot of junior members, like we used to," Decker said, referring to those between 16 and 18 years old.

Though they can't go into a burning structure until the fire is under control, Decker said the juniors learn the nuts and bolts at emergency scenes.

"A lot of people we have, like myself, are second- and third-generation firefighters."


Friday, May 18, 2007

Now That the Shoe is On the Other Foot,...

Al Sharpton will soon answer: "Just how DOES crow taste?"

SALT LAKE CITY — Leaders for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the Rev. Al Sharpton are planning an in-person meeting, a church spokesman said.

Sharpton asked for the meeting during a telephone apology he gave to two church elders after he said during a May 7 debate that Mormons don't believe in God.

"Mr. Sharpton and church leaders are looking at possible dates for a meeting, but nothing is imminent," church spokesman Scott Trotter said.

Sharpton spoke by phone with Russell M. Nelson and Henry B. Eyring, members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, the second-tier of church leadership.

The minister and former Democratic presidential candidate's remarks were about Mitt Romney, a Mormon who is seeking the Republican presidential nomination in 2008. Sharpton said that "as for the one Mormon running for office, those who really believe in God will defeat him anyway, so don't worry about that, that's a temporary situation."

Sharpton says the remark was distorted for political purposes and has apologized to "regular Mormons" for the slight.

Sharpton said he "wasn't saying that Mormons didn't believe in God, I was saying that we weren't going to have to rely on atheists" to defeat Romney.

Sharpton has not apologized to Romney, but called for a "dialogue or reconciliation."

A Romney spokesman has said nothing constructive would be accomplished by meeting with Sharpton. Romney has called Sharpton's remarks bigoted.

Sharpton has also raised questions about Romney's views on the way African-American Mormons were treated by their church before 1978, when only white men were allowed to hold certain religious offices.

A Free Speech Victory!

A pro-family organization is praising members of the House Judiciary Committee who voted to kill a proposed amendment aimed at regulating grassroots organizations. The Meehan Amendment would have required groups like the American Family Association to be treated like lobbying groups and be subject to all kinds of regulations by the government.

Hear This Report

Buddy Smith is the assistant to the chairman of the American Family Association (AFA). He says the Meehan amendment would have made it difficult for groups to communicate with their supporters about bills moving in Congress. If passed, the amendment would have established federal regulatory authority over efforts aimed at motivating citizens to communicate with their representatives about congressional legislation.

Under this amendment, the government "would require all types of onerous reporting mechanisms, which would really muzzle our ability to get the word out in a timely fashion," Smith observes. But considering the composition of the Judiciary Committee, he says, it is amazing the amendment went down.

"It has some of the most liberal Democrats on the committee," the AFA spokesman contends. "And on the Republican side," he says, "I see some of what we would call RINOs over there, some 'Republicans in name only.' So it is really amazing that the outcry was so strong that this bill went down in committee."

The amendment was so bad, even organizations from the left opposed it, Smith asserts. "The purpose of this bill was to muzzle groups like AFA," he says, "and -- believe it or not -- the bill was just such an outrage that we find ourselves for the first time in a long time joining hands with the [American Civil Liberties Union] in opposition to this. It was just so outrageous, even the ACLU came out against it."

The American Family Association is praising members of the House Judiciary Committee who voted to kill the Meehan Amendment, a measure the pro-family organization says could have silenced grassroots groups like AFA by restricting their communications with their supporters.
Editor's Note: The American Family Association is the parent organization of the American Family News Network, which operates OneNewsNow.com.


Thursday, May 17, 2007

Time to Push MoveOn.Org Off the Left Cliff!

From Marie's Two Cents:

Move America Forward Needs Help THIS THURSDAY! MAY 17

Our friends over at Move America Forward need our help again THIS THURSDAY MAY 17 PEOPLE.

The fight between pro-troop organizations exploded this week on the television airwaves.

The well-known news program, The News Hour with Jim Lehrer, invited Move America Forward's chairman, Melanie Morgan, to come on the show to provide balance to a MoveOn.org representative who co-founded a new front group called VoteVets.org. Anti-war groups, led by MoveOn.org, are launching a multi-million dollar advertising and lobbying campaign this week to cut off funding for U.S. troops fighting in the war on terrorism.

The debate between Melanie Morgan of MAF and the anti-war representative of the MoveOn.org affiliated group was intense:

View Here/Transcript/Real Audio

Click Marie's link for the rest of the information!

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A New Book for the Trek Library?

And it comes so highly-recommended by Will "My Panties Are In a" Bunch, too!

New York Times best-selling author Evans calls on a slumbering church to stand against evil in The Final Move Beyond Iraq, the latest of his works
about the volatile Middle East. Evans also challenges America to act decisively in 2007 because, he believes, Iran will soon reach the point of no return in its nuclear program. A political conservative who has served as personal confidant to many of Israel s top leaders, Evans declares that President

George W. Bush was right to invade Iraq and that having a base for democracy in the region is essential. However, the author is more worried about Iran, which he sees as the current financier and exporter of Islamofascism, a form of radical Islam that seeks global domination. Rather than simply getting Iraq to police itself, Evans believes, the priority of the war should be on defeating Iran s nuclear plans. Evans urges the church to wake up and pray like the prophet Daniel did in the 21 days that brought deliverance to his people. Political conservatives will find Evans to be an ally and staunch advocate of the war on terror. Christine D. Johnson --Christian Retailing: May 7, 2007

You can read more about it here!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Fluffer Nutter,....

OK,..so Mr. Personality gets to trounce Al Taubenberger in November (unless the local media spins a good race-baiting story out of the campaign).

Anyway,..it IS good to see something resembling reform come to Philly government.

So,..the Trekmedic went to exercise his Constitutional right to vote and is STILL regretting every minute of it (77 minutes to be exact, but I digress),....

The TrekMedic has seen many an election in his lifetime, but never has he witnessed something so closely resembling a monkey f**king a football as much as yesterday!

Where to start?

Clearly, no one anticipated the turn-out for yesterday, or else more than TWO F**KING VOTING BOOTHS would have made their way to the 34th Ward!

Its hard to vote when the two "election officials" don't reset the booths. One was too busy listening to Radio Air Pollution from 100.3 on the radio to notice when the booth was empty, and the other kept leaving her post every 5 minutes to chat with neighbors, sistas, and brothas.

Despite CLEARLY MARKED instructions at the polling station (a grade school using four classrooms to accommodate 4 divisions), many people stood in line for more than the aforementioned 77 minutes, only to be told that their polling station was two blocks away. This brought about some of the best Al Sharpton imitations the Trekmedic has seen in years! Voting rights being denied! Racism! Racism!

Lots of things to vote for. If the Trekmedic is correct (and always is,..just ask SillyS**ts and Akkam's Razor), the local papers printed and published sample ballots for several days. And now,..once you're in the booth, you need someone to explain the ballot to you?? WTF?? Quit watching eMpTyV and Jerry Springer for a few hours and read the paper!


Well,...more than likely, this was the TrekMedic's last foray into the Philliness of Siladelphia politics. With a few more coats of paint and some general contracting in the works, the "FOR SALE" sign will go up soon on the TrekMansion and he'll depart for the comfort of the suburbs and the peace and quiet of which it affords!


Tuesday, May 15, 2007


WASHINGTON — An accused enemy combatant held at Guantanamo Bay told a military hearing he was physically as well as mentally tortured there by having to read a newsletter full of 'crap,' being forced to use unscented deodorant and shampoo and having to play sports with a ball that would not bounce.

Majid Khan of Pakistan denied any connection to Al Qaeda and said he was tortured and his family hounded by U.S. authorities, according to a redacted transcript released Tuesday by the Pentagon.

Khan told an April 15 hearing called to determine whether he was rightly classified as an "enemy combatant" that he also had his baby pictures taken from him, that cleaners left marks on his cell walls and that detainees have no DVD players or other entertainment.

At one point, Kan said he wrote on his walls, "stop torturing me, I need my mails, newspaper and my lawyer."

Khan was captured in Pakistan in 2003. The military says he has provided support to Al Qaeda and has expressed a desire to assassinate Pakistan's President Pervez Musharaff. U.S. government authorities have said that Khan was also involved in plots to blow up American gas stations and poison U.S. reservoirs. The April 15 hearing is the first step in possible war crimes charges against him.

Then we have someone who isn't a terrorist, just a domestic terror:

LOS ANGELES — Paris Hilton is "emotionally distraught and traumatized" over her 45-day jail sentence and isn't capable of testifying in a civil lawsuit against her, the socialite-reality TV star's psychiatrist said.

Dr. Charles Sophy has been seeing Hilton, 26, for the past eight months and has talked with her several times since her May 4 hearing for violating the terms of her probation in an alcohol-related reckless driving case, according to court papers.

Sophy said Hilton needs time to recover from the shock of receiving jail time before testifying in a civil case brought against her by actress and diamond heiress Zeta Graff.

Messages left with Hilton's spokesman and lawyer weren't immediately returned early Tuesday.

In court papers filed Monday, Sophy said Hilton is "distraught and traumatized as a consequence of the findings at the May 4 hearing ... and her fear of incarceration."

"At this point in time," he continued, "Ms. Hilton cannot effectively respond to examination as a witness or provide any significant input into her defense."


Monday, May 14, 2007

Thumbnails? or Thumbscrews?

So, tomorrow, May 15th, Philadelphians will elect the city's next mayor (face it: Al Taubenberg has as much chance of becoming mayor as Shrillary does becoming President!).

So,..let's take the TrekMedic's brief and skewed views of the major candidates:

  • Congressman Bob Brady - union goon. Running to keep the "pay-to-play" status quo in place.
  • State Rep. Dwight Evans - should've been mayor eight years ago. Looks like the brass ring is spinning further and further out of his grasp.
  • Congressman Chaka Fattah - John Street's lap dog. The black version of why Bob Brady is in the race.
  • Tom Knox - Self-made millionaire who pulled himself out of the projects. He could be spending his millions down in some resort, but he's stayed in town to change the political landscape. In any other part of the US, you'd call him a "republican."
  • Michael Nutter - If his never-ending pontificating doesn't put you to sleep, the sound of him chewing on his shoe leather will.
Just remember: If you're a Philadelphia, vote early and vote often!


Saturday, May 12, 2007

It Won't Stop With Imus,....(Bloggers Feel It, Too!)

This post from XXX at First In!:

Programming Note!

As many Bloggers are finding out (Rachel for example) the politically correct environment that modern liberals have created can be a dangerous place. If you don't tow the politically correct line, your free speech rights can get squashed and you can find yourself in a jam PDQ. Wyatt knows exactly what I mean. Being public servants puts us into a category that is different than most folks. And within this category there are sub categories. If you don't fit into the proper category and you voice your opinion, and someone in charge doesn't like it, you put yourself and your livelihood at risk.

So I have a dilemma. I can quit Blogging for my family's sake. I'll have less of a chance of pissing anyone off and therefore keep my job. OR I can censor all of my remarks to make them non-offensive and politically correct. (I'd rather quit). The other option is to go underground. Change my name and edit my previous posts to remove anything that could potentially get me into trouble. As it is now it wouldn't be too hard to figure out who I am at work.

I could also turn the blog over to someone else. (Nah). So I think in the end I'm going to keep at it for a while longer. I'll see how it goes. One thing though: I'll be changing my screen name to CaptainAmerica from now on. Since I couldn't think of another good name (Tired) and he's been my favorite Super Hero and a running theme in my blog I figured it will work. Thanks to my twelve readers for your patience and support.


The TrekMedic offers this:

Stick with it, Cap'n!!


I Guess Republican Women Are "Nappy-Headed Hos," Too?

Calling Al Sharpton! Calling Al Sharpton! Start your protest machine!

Bad-boy radio hosts Opie and Anthony yesterday topped even their infamous 2002 "Sex in St. Pat's" stunt, serving up a homeless man's profane declaration that he'd like to rape Condoleezza Rice, Laura Bush and Queen Elizabeth.

The graphic sequence on their XM Satellite Radio program showed that even in a medium with no restrictions on content, Opie and Anthony found a way to cross the line.

The actual comments were made by a guest the shock jocks call Homeless Charlie. As each woman's name came up, he said, "I'd love to f--- that b----."

They laughed as they imagined "the horror" in Rice's face and what it would be like to hold her down and punch her in the face.

The crude cracks came a month after CBS gave Don Imus the boot for calling members of the Rutgers University women's basketball team "nappy-headed ho's."

As an audio clip spread across the Internet, XM quickly issued a condemnation. "We deplore the comments made on today's 'Opie & Anthony Show,'" said an XM spokesman.

Opie and Anthony themselves offered an apology yesterday evening:

"We take very seriously the responsibility that comes with our creative freedom and regret any offense that this segment has caused."

At the State Department, spokesman Sean McCormack shook his head in disgust but declined to comment on the insult to the secretary of state. A White House spokesman declined to "dignify that with a response."

CBS Radio, where Opie and Anthony are heard earlier each morning over WFNY (92.3 FM) on a different show with much stricter content guidelines, breathed an almost audible sigh of relief.

"Fortunately, we have standards that did not, and would not, ever let something like this make our air," it said.

XM said nothing yesterday about disciplinary action, but industry observers said the offensive remarks had the potential to derail a lot more than the deejays' jobs.

XM and Sirius Satellite are seeking the Federal Communications Commission's approval for a merger. Tom Taylor, editor of the trade magazine Inside Radio, noted this could place the issue of content on the table.

"XM and Sirius don't want any regulation," he said. "But it's come up in four congressional hearings - and at this point, the merger is such a close call any issue could become important."

Opie and Anthony had "Homeless Charlie" on their WFNY show earlier yesterday. While many of his comments were bleeped out, he talked about how he "punches old b----es in the head" to steal their money.

Anthony, whose full name is Anthony Cumia, called that comment "horrible and awful," but said it illustrated a point about radio today. "You can talk about beating up old ladies and nobody stops you, but make one insulting joke about an ethnic group and you're fired."

Opie (aka Gregg Hughes) and Anthony have complained lately about restrictions on their terrestrial radio content, a subject with which they are familiar.

They were taken off New York's WNEW by CBS in August 2002 for running a contest in which they said two listeners had sex in St. Patrick's Cathedral.

They were hired by XM in 2004 and in 2006 rehired by CBS for WFNY.

Michael Harrison, editor of the trade magazine Talkers, said they could now face the same pressure Imus came under, even though their bit aired on satellite.

"In both cases," said Harrison, "FCC regulations don't matter, because they weren't violated. Those involved are still subject to public reaction - a reaction that now is amplified by the Internet."


So,..was Bernie McGuirk wrong??

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Friday, May 11, 2007

God Bless Pierre Robert!

This week, WMMR radio personality Pierre Robert went on the airwaves to raise funds to purchase a new vehicle for Project HOME.

As of this afternoon, enough money was raised to purchase the new vehicle!

What was so great about all of this, you may ask?

It wasn't about some politician with a check (and strings attached) looking for a photo op....

It wasn't the result of some City Council promise that would inevitably languish in the system for years....

It was about everyday, average Joes, giving whatever they had to spare, spurred on by a graying, middle-aged hippie who's captured the spirit if Philadelphia for more than a quarter century!

And for that the TrekMedic says:

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Thursday, May 10, 2007

The Dumb-O-Crats React to the Fort Dix Six!

Major HT to JG at Now for Something Different for this gem:

Of course, this lends right-minded readers to ask this question!

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The Rosie Award Goes to,....

Al Sharpton! (2 Dumb-o-crats in 2 days! That's gotta be a record!)

Despite the immense media hoopla surrounding Don Imus and Al Sharpton, the civil rights leader doesn't seem to have practiced what he preached, after he made what's believed to be a derogatory statement against presidential hopeful Mitt Romney.

Sharpton said "those of us who believe in God" will defeat Romney, a member of the Church of Latter Day Saints. He denies that he was questioning the Mormon's own belief in God, but rather contrasting himself with Christopher Hitchens, the atheist author he was debating.

"What I said was that we would defeat him, meaning as a Republican," Sharpton said. "A Mormon, by definition, believes in God. They don't believe in God the way I do, but by definition, they believe in God." READ MORE

The TrekMedic ponders:

OK,...OK! We get it. Al Sharpton doesn't hate Mormons. Its those damn Hymies in Hymietown, like Michael Bloomberg, that he can't stand, right?

Hey, Imus,....keep that apartment in NYC. You'll have your job back soon if this asshole keeps it up!


Wednesday, May 09, 2007

The Rosie Award Goes to,....

Barack Obama!

RICHMOND, Va. — Barack Obama, caught up in the fervor of a campaign speech Tuesday, drastically overstated the Kansas tornadoes death toll, saying 10,000 had died.

The death toll was 12.

"In case you missed it, this week, there was a tragedy in Kansas. Ten thousand people died — an entire town destroyed," the Democratic presidential candidate said in a speech to 500 people packed into a sweltering Richmond art studio for a fundraiser.

Obama mentioned the disaster in Greensburg, Kan., in saying he had been told by the office of Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius that the state's National Guard had been depleted by its commitment to the Iraq War.

"Turns out that the National Guard in Kansas only had 40 percent of its equipment and they are having to slow down the recovery process in Kansas," Obama said, his shirt sleeves rolled up and his head glistening with sweat.

As the Illinois senator concluded his remarks a few minutes later, he appeared to realize his gaffe.

"There are going to be times when I get tired," he said. "There are going to be times when I get weary. There are going to be times when I make mistakes."

Obama spokesman Bill Burton said later that the senator meant to say "at least 10," instead of 10,000.

During his speech, Obama stirred the crowd as he often does by skewering President Bush over the unpopular war and noting that he opposed it from the outset.

"How could we have been involved in a war that never should have been authorized, that has already cost us half a trillion dollars," Obama said.

It was Obama's third visit to Virginia's capital in eight months. It came as national polls show him trailing rival Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., by double digits.

The TrekMedic appends:

Funny how Gov. Sebelius is starting to sound like Louisiana Gov. Blanco, and Obama is starting to sound like New Orleans Mayor Nagin.

Oh, yeah,..they ARE following the same DNC/MSM-approved script, aren't they?


They Don't Always Do It Overseas,...

Marine Drowns Saving 2 Boys Off North Carolina Beach

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

ALMA, Mich. — A U.S. Marine drowned after saving two children who were swimming off Atlantic Beach in North Carolina, the military said.

Master Sgt. Michael Wert, an intelligence chief for the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing at Cherry Point in Havelock, N.C., was vacationing this past weekend with his family at the beach when he saw two boys struggling in the surf, the Marines said in a statement.

His wife, Debbie, said her husband rushed into the water to help while she went to call 911. Their daughter, Katrina, grabbed a boogie board and followed Wert, a Michigan native, into the water.

"She managed to help the boys onto the board, but didn't see her dad with them," Debbie Wert said in the statement. "The one little boy told her (Michael Wert) had to let them go and had died."

Rescue personnel found Wert but could not revive him.

Wert joined the Marines in 1989 after graduating from Alma High School, where he was a cross-country runner, The Saginaw News reported. He served in Operation Desert Storm and supported Operation Iraqi Freedom.

"He was a good student and a fine young man," said school secretary Anne Jarrett. "He died trying to save someone else. Not many people would do that."

Alma City Manager Phillip J. Moore said some in the small community north of Lansing have called city hall to see how they can help the family.

"It's a tragedy, but we are all proud of him," Moore said.

In addition to his wife and daughter, Wert is survived by two other children, his parents and two siblings.

A memorial service was scheduled for Wednesday at the Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point. Visitation was scheduled for Friday at Dewey Funeral Home in Alma, with funeral services Saturday at Alma United Methodist Church.

Semper fi, bro,.....

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Clearly, the System Works!

MOUNT LAUREL, N.J. — Ever since Sept. 11, U.S. authorities have asked the public to be vigilant, urging, "If you see something, say something."

In January 2006, a store clerk in New Jersey saw something.

A group of men had brought him a video showing them firing assault weapons and chanting, "God is Great!" in Arabic. They wanted him to transfer the footage onto a DVD.

So he said something, calling the Mount Laurel Police Department, who in turn contacted the FBI.

And thus began the downfall of one of the most thoroughly infiltrated and documented group of terrorism suspects in recent history — six men from Yugoslavia and the Middle East who were charged Tuesday with plotting to slaughter scores of American soldiers at Fort Dix and perhaps other military installations in the Northeast.

Click here to read the complaint (FindLaw pdf)

FBI agent J.P. Weis saluted the unidentified Mount Laurel store clerk as the "unsung hero" of the case.

"That's why we're here today — because of the courage and heroism of that individual," the FBI agent said.

The suspects' images and words were captured on more than 50 audio and video recordings. Their comings and goings were recorded by law enforcement agents who monitored the alleged plot for 16 months, hoping more terror ties would become apparent.

The defendants, all men in their 20s, include a pizza deliveryman suspected of using his job to scout out Fort Dix. Their goal was "to kill as many American soldiers as possible" in attacks with mortars, rocket-propelled grenades and guns, prosecutors said.

"Today we dodged a bullet. In fact, when you look at the type of weapons that this group was trying to purchase, we may have dodged a lot of bullets," Weis said. "We had a group that was forming a platoon to take on an army. They identified their target, they did their reconnaissance. They had maps. And they were in the process of buying weapons. Luckily, we were able to stop that."

Authorities said there was no direct evidence connecting the men to any international terror organizations such as Al Qaeda. But several of them said they were ready to kill and die "in the name of Allah," according to court papers.

The six men — five of whom lived in Cherry Hill, a Philadelphia suburb about 20 miles from Fort Dix — were arrested Monday night while trying to buy AK-47 assault weapons, M-16s and other weapons from an FBI informant, authorities said.

"This is what law enforcement is supposed to do in the post-9/11 era — stay one step ahead of those who are attempting to cause harm to innocent American citizens," U.S. Attorney Christopher Christie said.

In addition to plotting the attack on Fort Dix, the defendants spoke of attacking a Navy installation in Philadelphia during the annual Army-Navy football game and conducted surveillance at other military installations in the region, prosecutors said.

One defendant, Eljvir Duka, was recorded as saying: "In the end, when it comes to defending your religion, when someone ... attacks your religion, your way of life, then you go jihad."

"It doesn't matter to me whether I get locked up, arrested or get taken away," another defendant, Serdar Tatar, was alleged to have said. "Or I die, it doesn't matter. I'm doing it in the name of Allah."

They appeared in federal court Tuesday in Camden and were ordered held without bail for a hearing Friday. Five were charged with conspiracy to kill U.S. military personnel; the sixth was charged with aiding and abetting illegal immigrants in obtaining weapons.

Four of the men were born in the former Yugoslavia, one was born in Jordan and one came from Turkey, authorities said. All had lived in the United States for years. Three were in the United States illegally; two had green cards allowing them to stay in this country permanently; and the sixth is a U.S. citizen.

One defendant, Mohamad Ibrahim Shnewer, spoke of using rocket-propelled grenades and other weapons to kill at least 100 soldiers, according to court documents.

"My intent is to hit a heavy concentration of soldiers," he was quoted as saying. "You hit four, five or six Humvees and light the whole place (up) and retreat completely without any losses."

The men trained by playing paintball in the woods in New Jersey and taking target practice at a firing range in Pennsylvania's Pocono Mountains, where they had rented a house, authorities said.

They often watched terror training videos, clips featuring Usama bin Laden, a tape containing the last will and testament of some of the Sept. 11 hijackers, and tapes of armed attacks on U.S. military personnel, erupting in laughter when one plotter noted that a Marine's arm was blown off in an ambush, authorities said.

Asked if those arrested had any links to Al Qaeda, White House spokesman Tony Snow said it appears "there is no direct evidence of a foreign terrorist tie."

The FBI's Weis said the U.S. is seeing a "brand-new form of terrorism," involving smaller, more loosely defined groups that may not be connected to Al Qaeda but are inspired by its ideology.

"These homegrown terrorists can prove to be as dangerous as any known group, if not more so. They operate under the radar," Weis said.

According to court documents, the video that the store clerk found disturbing depicted 10 young men in their early 20s "shooting assault weapons at a firing range ... while calling for jihad and shouting in Arabic 'Allah Akbar' (God is great)." The 10 included six of those arrested, authorities said.

Within months, the FBI had managed to infiltrate the group with two informants, according to court documents.

One of the suspects, Tatar, worked at his father's pizzeria and made deliveries to Fort Dix, using the opportunity to scout out the base for an attack, authorities said.

"Clearly, one of the guys had an intimate knowledge of the base from having been there delivering pizzas," Christie said.

The men also allegedly conducted surveillance at other area military installations, including Fort Monmouth in New Jersey, Dover Air Force Base in Delaware, and a Philadelphia Coast Guard station.

Besides Shnewer, Tatar and Duka, the other three men were identified in court papers as Dritan Duka, Shain Duka and Agron Abdullahu.

Fort Dix is used to train soldiers, particularly reservists. It also housed refugees from Kosovo in 1999.

The arrests stirred renewed worry among New Jersey's Muslim community. Hundreds of Muslim men from New Jersey were rounded up and detained in the months after the Sept. 11 attacks, but none were connected to that plot.

"If these people did something, then they deserve to be punished to the fullest extent of the law," said Sohail Mohammed, a lawyer who represented scores of detainees after the 2001 attacks. "But when the government says `Islamic militants,' it sends a message to the public that Islam and militancy are synonymous."

"Don't equate actions with religion," he said.

The TrekMedic ponders:

Does this guy even listen to what he just said??

These weren't your classic Muslim Arabs or Central Asians. These were Muslims from Southeastern Europe!!

Any way you slice it,..they were Muslims trying to kill Americans for the sake of killing them in the name of Allah.

That makes them "Islamic Militants."

'Nuff Said!


Monday, May 07, 2007

Sacre Bleu!

PARIS — Nicolas Sarkozy, a blunt and uncompromising pro-American conservative, was elected president of France Sunday with a mandate to chart a new course for an economically sluggish nation struggling to incorporate immigrants and their children. (TM - Sound familiar?)

Sarkozy defeated Socialist Segolene Royal by by 53.06 percent to 46.94 percent with 84 percent turnout, according to final results released early Monday. It was a decisive victory for Sarkozy's vision of freer markets and toughness on crime and immigration, over Royal's gentler plan for preserving cherished welfare protections, including a 35-hour work week that Sarkozy called "absurd."

"The people of France have chosen change," Sarkozy told cheering supporters in a victory speech that sketched out a stronger global role for France and renewed partnership with the United States.

There were few reports of unrest, despite fears that the impoverished suburban housing projects, home to Arab and African immigrants and their French-born children, would erupt again at the victory of a man who labeled those responsible for rioting in 2005 as "scum." That abrasive style raised doubts over whether Sarkozy, himself the son of a Hungarian refugee, could truly unite the increasingly diverse and polarized nation.

Sarkozy pledged in his victory speech to be president "of all the French, without exception." But that task will not be easy. The 52-year-old former interior minister inherits a nation losing faith in itself, paralyzed by worries over globalization, bitter at American dominance and saddled with social tensions.

Late Sunday, small bands of youths hurled stones and other objects at police at the Place de la Bastille in Paris, who fired volleys of tear gas. Two police unions said firebombs targeted schools and recreation centers in several towns in the Essonne region just south of Paris.

For all his determination and talk of change, Sarkozy also is certain to face resistance from powerful unions to his plans to make the French work more and make it easier for companies to hire and fire.

"Like Thatcher in Britain, like Reagan in the United States, Sarkozy will change things," said supporter Thierry Gauvert, 55. (TM - That's saying a LOT!)

The White House said President Bush had called to congratulate Sarkozy, who is largely untested in foreign policy but reached out to the United States in his victory speech, an indication of his desire to break from the trans-Atlantic tension of the Chirac era.

Sarkozy also made it clear that France would remain an independent voice.

The United States, he declared, can "count on our friendship," but he added that "friendship means accepting that friends can have different opinions."

He urged the United States to take the lead on climate change and said the issue would be a priority for France.

"A great nation, like the United States, has a duty not to block the battle against global warming but _ on the contrary _ to take the lead in this battle, because the fate of the whole of humanity is at stake," Sarkozy said.

In some European capitals, Sarkozy's victory inspired hope that he might lend a decisive hand to efforts to salvage the European Union's hopes of greater integration, largely on ice since French and Dutch voters rejected a proposed EU constitution in 2005.

Royal's program seemed more in line with the policies pursued under the outgoing Jacques Chirac _ who is from Sarkozy's own party, the Union for a Popular Movement. Chirac, 74, held the presidency for 12 years but failed repeatedly to push through reforms.

The handover of power ushers in a president from a new generation, who has no memory of World War II and waged the country's first high-octane Internet campaign.

Royal, an unmarried mother of four, would have been France's first female president. Her defeat could throw her party into disarray, with splits between those who say it must remain firm to its leftist traditions and others who want a shift to the political center like socialist parties elsewhere in Europe. (TM - Hope for the US on 2008?)

Conceding minutes after polls closed, Royal said her campaign had launched a "profound renewal of political life, of its methods and of the left ... What we tried to do for France will bear fruit, I am sure."

"I thank from the bottom of my heart the nearly 17 million voters ... who placed their trust in me, and I can gauge their disappointment," she said. "I hope that the next president of the Republic will accomplish his mission at the service of all the French people."

Cracks immediately started appearing in the Socialist Party, which now must try to regroup ahead of June legislative elections that Sarkozy's party must win to give him the majority he needs to reform.

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, a Socialist former finance minister, noted that it was his party's third consecutive defeat in presidential elections.

"The left has never been so weak, because the French left has still not renewed itself," he said.

Sarkozy _ for whom the presidency has been a near-lifelong quest _ will formally take over Chirac on the very last day of his term, May 16. Sarkozy aide Francois Fillon, a favorite to be the prime minister, said that for a few days from Monday, Sarkozy plans "to withdraw to somewhere in France to decompress a little" and to prepare his government team.


Newt Gingrich gives a pithy and thoughtful account here.

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The ACLU Practices DoubleStandarddradnatSelbuoD, Too!

From BobG at Sweet Spirits of Ammonia:

Once again the infamous ACLU rears its ugly prejudicial head, cheering the House for passing H.R. 1592, the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act. A bill giving only certain Americans special protection before the law violates the very spirit of equality the ACLU pretends to drape itself in. Nothing new, this obnoxious organization is all about special agendas and how it can subvert the will of the American majority and the intent of the Constitution to promote its leftist agenda.

The bill was introduced by Representative John Conyers (D-MI), one of the Democrats' ethics poster children and legislative lunatics.

The TrekMedic adds local flavor:

Interestingly,...in a city that just created a "Gay Ghetto," mayoral hopeful US Congressman Chaka Fattah did not vote on this bill.


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Sunday, May 06, 2007

It Won't Stop With Imus,....(Next Target)

It appears Media Matters next target of opportunity is Bill O'Reilly.

Media Matters quotes a University of Indiana report on his on-screen persona. (Stats Here)

O'Reilly strikes back here:

The truth hurts, doesn't it, George Soros?

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Saturday, May 05, 2007

And Where Was Al Sharpton When This Went Down??

HT to the Wordsmith from Nantucket for this story (via Michelle Malkin):

Thank you, readers. Thank you, Laura Ingraham listeners. Thank you, Verizon Wireless:

Verizon decided this week to end its support and sponsorship of Akon.

Jim Gerace

Vice President, Corporate Communications
Verizon Wireless
One Verizon Way
Basking Ridge, NJ 07920

Akon's ringtones have been removed by the Verizon Wireless website.

I just spoke with Gerace by phone, and he told me Verizon Wireless had made a "mistake" partnering with Akon.

It's good to see some corporate responsibility here. Will others step up to the plate?


Update: A reader notes that Verizon is still sponsoring Gwen Stefani's tour--with Akon as the opening act.

What will they do now?

Update II: Verizon writes that they are no longer sponsoring the Gwen Stefani tour with Akon as opening act. Jim Gerace:

"We are no longer -- that was the decision we made this week. If the reader is seeing a poster or something promoting our sponsorship of the tour, it's only because that material has not yet been destroyed."

The TrekMedic adds:

Just more of the same ol' same ol' from Radio Air Polluters. When are these so-called leaders of Black America going to stop giving losers like this a free pass, while throwing people like Imus under the bus??

Friday, May 04, 2007

The Fags Are Coming! The Fags Are Coming!

Note: if the title offends you,....tough s**t! Read on!

It began as a block party writ large: a chance for those whom most people called homosexuals to party publicly in a Center City neighborhood they considered theirs and celebrate the beginnings of that openness.

Now, a decade and a half later, the straight world has learned "homosexuals" are too diverse to label with one word. They call themselves gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and, often, just people.

And the weekend event once known as PrideFest has been formalized into Equality Forum, an international weeklong convention focusing on sexual minorities in society, government and business.

It begins today, this year honoring such diverse people as tennis great Martina Navratilova and Mayor Street and featuring panels on topics including black urban gay youths, the legal status of same-sex marriage, and the emerging gay-rights movements in such long-closeted countries as China.


"When we started this in 1992, we were breaking totally new ground," Lazin said. "But we had a different vision and wanted to be part of what was a nascent civil-rights movement."

For an example of how far the movement has come, one need only look at this year's Distinguished Service award winner: John Street.

As City Council president a decade ago, Street had an icy relationship with the gay community because he opposed extending benefits to unmarried domestic partners of city workers.

The issue was hot enough that the gay community backed Republican Sam Katz against Street in his first run for mayor. Since then, Street has reached out to gay leaders and named several gay citizens to public office, including City Solicitor Romulo L. Diaz Jr.


Though the forum draws tens of thousands to Center City, Sunday's block-party aspect - known as SundayOUT - is arguably among the lesser parts of its agenda.

The TrekMedic ponders:

"...in a Center City neighborhood they consider theirs..."

That would be the recently-declared "Gayborhood." (Video here - provide your own barf bags).

Now, gentle readers, image for a moment a parallel world. One where our government had the Constitutional, legislative and judicial authority to mandate the creation of "gay ghettos" in all American urban centers. Now, imagine as well, that gays would further be mandated to wear pink triangles or rainbows on their clothing and the back bumpers of their cars (all the more easy for the police to pull over gays doing 36 in a 35 mph zone).

Now, imagine on that same said parallel world, they had the same liberal media with its leftist agenda. Can you imagine the hue and cry if a "gayborhood" were forced on homosexuals???

So what, gentle readers, do we take from this lesson? When liberals create minority ghettos, they describe them by couching ghettos in such liberal-speak as "empowerment" and "diversity." When right-minded people attempt it (because we aren't that stupid to try), the MSM will always scream "right-wing fascists!!!"

**That's my Opinion and You're Entitled to It!"**

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